Clinical O’Brien propels Charleville into decider

IT WAS a memorable afternoon for Charleville yesterday as they qualified for their first ever Munster JHC club final. They will face Limerick champions Cappamore after eventually wearing down Tipperary’s Rockwell Rovers who were in contention up to the three-quarter mark.

However, a two-goal burst from the 14-man hosts decided the outcome, and boss TJ Crowley is already counting down the hours to travelling up the road for the provincial decider.

“It is brilliant to be in the final. We never thought at the start of the year that we would be facing into a Munster final in December but we are looking forward to it now. Fair play to Rockwell Rovers, they made us work hard. We needed a goal and we were fortunate enough when it came. Only for it, it would have been a very tight finish. The sending off gave us a bit of enthusiasm to get off our backsides. We had to up our game. The score line was a bit flattering in the end.”

That they came good is a credit to Charleville but they will not be happy with their wides of 15 (five for Rockwell Rovers). Once again James O’Brien played a major part scoring 1-8. He also set up sub Mark Kavanagh for the first goal on 50 minutes and three minutes later struck one of his own, whipping the ball to the net.

Charleville’s advantage at the break was slim, 0-6 to 0-4 and home fans were worried their 10 wides would come back to haunt them. Rockwell Rovers were giving as good as they were getting and their four points was not a fair reflection on their efforts with Pat Halley at centre back and attacker Alan Moloney particularly to the fore.

Charleville restarted with points from O’Brien, Mervyn Gammell and Gavin Kelleher but Rockwell came back through Moloney placed balls. Then disaster struck when Alan O’Connor received a second yellow on 38 minutes. With the game hanging in the balance 0-10 to 0-8 entering the final 10 minutes the Charleville advantage looked vulnerable.

However, Danny and Michael O’Flynn were towering in defence, and the subs brought a freshness too, as shown by Kavanagh’s goal on 50 minutes. When O’Brien pounced for the second green flag minutes later, it ended the contest. The final is fixed for Mallow on Sunday week.

Scorers for Charleville: J O’Brien 1-8 (0-6 frees), M Kavanagh 1-0, M Gammell, G Kelleher, D Murphy, A Cagney and J Casey 0-1 each.

Scorers for Rockwell Rovers: A Moloney 0-5 (0-4 frees), B Shortall, D Byrne and T Flynn 0-1 each.

CHARLEVILLE: C Curtin; M O’Flynn, C Fitzgerald, A Dennehy; B McCarthy, D O’Flynn, B Dennehy; J Casey, D Murphy; G Kelleher, D O’Sullivan, M Gammell; A Cagney, A O’Connor, J O’Brien.

Subs: F O’Callaghan for D O’Sullivan, M Kavanagh for M Gammell (both 47 mins), J Foley for G Kelleher (58), B Barrett for J O’Brien (59), P J O’Halloran for A Dennehy (60).

ROCKWELL ROVERS: M O’Donnell; S Quirke, E Shine, L Lonergan; S Boland, Pat Halley, K Heaney; T Flynn, G Ryan; E Byrne, Paul Halley, A Moloney; J Heffernan, B Shortall, M Fahey.

Subs: A Barron for M Fahey (ht), D Byrne for T Flynn (35), C Heaney for J Heffernan (42), P Prendergast for S Quirke (56), W Flynn for G Ryan (59).

Referee: D O’Driscoll (Limerick).

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up